One of the most common types of holes in running shoes is right at the top. Just above where your big toe is. About 20% of the population will get this type of hole regularly enough in their running shoes. The hole is a result of the big toe lifting up on toe off. Some people biomechanics will have them engaging the big toe and lifting it up as they toe off.
Brands are constantly trying to make the shoes from lighter and more breathable materials. In 2016 Asics changed the material they were using on the upper of their shoes. As a result the shoes were more breathable however customers found that their toe was going through the shoes much quicker. More breathable also meant less durable.
To make the shoe breathable and still durable many brands have now moved over to what's called "a knitted upper". It's almost like a twin skin and makes it very hard for anyone to put a hole through it. I won't say impossible as some people will eventually go through goretex uppers. However you can see from the image below that it's a much stronger upper.
The Knitted upper has been out a little over a year in the above shoe The Brooks GTS and it's only now we're getting a real feel for how people got on with it. Most people have gotten much longer our of it than they would have with their traditional upper. On our shoe wall at the moment I'd say 20% of the shoes now have a knitted upper they aren't more expensive they aren't as breathable as their traditional counterpart.
When a Customer comes into Amphibian King we will always look at their old shoes and ask questions about how they lasted. If we notice holes in the upper we would explain about knitted uppers and bring down a few options for the customer to try on.
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